Are tinted car windows legal in New South Wales?
Here at Auto Artisan we are industry-leaders in everything related to wrapping vehicles including cars, trucks, trailers, commercial vehicles and boats. If it moves, we wrap it! This also applies to entire fleets in our fleet branding. Another service we offer is car window tinting, however many people are confused about what is legal and what isn’t when it comes to car window tinting here in Sydney and throughout New South Wales, Australia. Below we will discuss what is allowed by law and what may have you pulled over and fined by the police:
Different Windows, Different Rules
Unsurprisingly, there are different rules for different windows on the vehicle, broken down into windshield, front side windows, back side windows and rear window. One important acronym which you will hear of a lot is the percentage of VLT, meaning Visible Light Transmission. For example, 25% VLT means the tints must show at least 25% of the natural light. The individual rules for the different windows here in NSW are below:
- Windshield: The strictest window tint rules apply to the front windshield of the vehicle where a tinted strip allows no more than 10% of the top of the windshield to be covered, or the tint must be above the windscreen wiper line whichever is higher.
- Front Side Windows: The driver and passenger front windows must have more than 35% VLT so at least 35% of the natural light must shine through.
- Rear Side Windows: The back windows on both driver and passenger side also have 35% VLT.
- Rear Window: Often the one which sparks most debate and confusion is the rear window however like the front and side rear windows, once it has more than 35% VLT it is legal here in NSW.
Other Car-Window Tint Rules in NSW
- Any tinted film which is reflective or mirror-like is not permitted.
- Even if the VLT is of the correct standard, if the film is discoloured, bubbled or damaged anyway and impacts the drivers vision, it’s not allowed.
- Factory-made glass on windshields may have up to 75% VLT.
- If there is tinted glass or film on side or rear windows, the vehicle must have dual exterior rear-view mirrors.
- Trucks, vans, utility vehicles or similar vehicles which are used to carry goods whereby the driver has little need to see through the rear window while driving have no VLT limits.
- Any vehicle which was registered before August 1st, 1994 does not have to abide by VLT laws IF the tint was fitted before that date, otherwise they are subject to the window-tint laws above.